Abortion no longer a constitutional right in US


The United States Supreme Court has declared that having an abortion is no longer a constitutional federal right, paving way for states in the US to ban abortion.

The court on Friday overturned the landmark Roe v. Wade ruling from 1973 which said a woman’s right to terminate her pregnancy was protected by the US constitution.

Justice Samuel Alito wrote in the ruling delivered today that Roe was egregiously wrong from the start.

“Its reasoning was exceptionally weak, and the decision has had damaging consequences. And far from bringing about a national settlement of the abortion issue, Roe and Casey have inflamed debate and deepened division.

“It is time to heed the Constitution and return the issue of abortion to the people’s elected representatives,” Alito wrote.

Six judges voted in favour of ending constitutional right to an abortion while  three justices  disagreed with the majority. The BBC reported that the three  wrote that they had done so “with sorrow – for this court, but more, for the many millions of American women who have today lost a fundamental constitutional protection”.

The ruling means individual states in the United States have the power to determine whether abortion should be legal within their borders. Half are expected to introduce new restrictions or bans, BBC reported.

It is expected that about 36 million women of reproductive age in the US will not have access to abortion following the ruling, according to BBC.

Anti-abortion activist celebrated the decision with one activist telling the BBC that  “It’s not enough just to make this the law of the land. To be pro-life is to make [abortion] unthinkable,” she said.

Pro-abortion activists have , however, described the ruling as “illegitimate”.  President Joe Biden has described the decision as “a tragic error” and he has urged states to enact laws to allow abortion.

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